(NewsNation Now) — A legal analyst said former “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett is “not looking good” after testifying during his trial, which will now move to closing arguments Wednesday.
“I think the jury is looking at this and saying, ‘it just doesn’t all add up’,” Terri Austin, host and legal analyst on the Law & Crime Network, said on “Dan Abrams Live.”
Smollett is charged with six felony counts of disorderly conduct after allegedly filing false police reports in connection with a hate crime attack, which prosecutors say he orchestrated in January of 2019.
Smollett has repeatedly denied he staged the attack on himself for publicity, telling a prosecutor as the trial neared its end that, “There was no hoax on my part” and that two brothers who testified against him are “liars.”
“We know it was the Osundairo brothers,” Austin said. “The prosecutor already said that the authorities have confirmed that. So if that’s the case, and Jussie Smollett knows these people, why would they be attacking him? I just think the whole premise is faulty.”
On Monday, Smollett called the Osundairo brothers’ testimony that he paid them $3,500 to carry out the fake attack “100% false,” and described how he was the victim of a hate crime while walking in his downtown Chicago neighborhood. He also testified that the $3,500 check to Abimbola Osundairo was for meal and workout plans because he was trying to get toned for an upcoming music video.
Austin said there were several inconsistencies with Smollett’s story, including whether his attackers were white, as police say Smollett told them.
“Obviously, all 12 jurors have to convict him and there might be a holdout there,” Austin said. “It might be someone who … says I am not thoroughly 100% convinced, even though it doesn’t have to be 100%. It has to be beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Even is he is convicted, Austin does not believe Smollett will serve time.
“I think he will probably pay some money, as far as the authorities wasting time doing this investigation,” Austin said. “Maybe he’ll go on probation. Maybe he’ll do community service.”
The Associated Press and Pix11’s Sarah Vasile contributed to this report.
- Arizona Democratic Party executive board censures Sinema
- 49 years after Roe, future shaky as states act on abortion limits, expansions
- Prosecutors add 23 new charges against disgraced former SC lawyer Alex Murdaugh
- ‘Joe vs Carole’: ‘Tiger King’-inspired TV series starring Kate McKinnon gets first trailer
- Ice, snow cover coast along Virginia and both Carolinas